Spring Tech Tip 3: Customize Your Google Classroom Theme
Three. More. Weeks. We can do this. But it’s difficult to keep the students engaged here at the end. So I’m counting down to summer break with simple spring tech tips that will help you mix things up for the students but still be easy for you to implement.
This week, I want to share a crazy, simple trick that even my seniors get excited over. So here it is…
Spring Tech Tip 3: Customize your Google Classroom Theme
As useful as I’ve found Google Classroom, if it always looks the same, the students get bored with it and don’t check the feed as often as they should. So I personalize it for them by changing the pictures in the header on the theme–if you’re not already doing this, it makes all the difference.
I take pictures of students working in class and add them. They like to check and see which pictures made the cut. Everybody wants to see themselves on the screen (even if it’s just a Chromebook screen).
But if you just snap a picture and upload it to the header, it will be stretched out and distorted. So there are a couple of steps you need to take before loading a picture if you want to avoid this.
If you are familiar with making digital collages and adjusting image sizes, these are the sizes you’ll need:
800 x 200 pixels or
8.3333 x 2.0833 inches
If you have no idea what this means, stick around for the tutorial, and be sure to download the free cheat sheets that you can print and have right in front of you the first time you give it a try.
You could use several programs to adjust your images, but I’m going to talk about how to do it in PowerPoint (super easy, and most of us have it) and Google Drawings (free, we all have it on Google, and it’s what I use if I’m doing it from my Chromebook).
It’s the small things that count here at the end. If you try this, let me know how it goes. If you already do it, how does it work out for you? Leave a comment below! And be sure to check out the other simple spring tech tips in this series:
As we embark on a year of uncertainty, we must consider equity and distance learning. This post discusses how to make virtual learning more equitable in 3 steps and comes with a downloadable cheat sheet.
Do you feel like you’re teaching in uncertain times? You’re not alone. But there are certain things that will always be certain. Like–your students need you to be there for them. Click through to find out how to do that with Culturally Responsive Teaching in Any Setting.
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